July 5, 2011 - Vol. 13, No. 3

Heddon's Big Chugger Spook or Big Chugg

Big Chugg in Silver Scale, Series #9550SS

In 1972, Heddon introduced the largest of their 'Chugger' style lures, named appropriately the Big Chugger Spook, and assigned it their series number 9550. This was one of five in the line of Chugger lures made by Heddon, that included the Chugger Spook #9540, Tiny Chugger Spook #335, Baby Chugger Spook #9520 (also known as the Chugger Spook Jr.) and the Skirted Chugger Spook #9525, not counting some of these which came in the same models but were assigned specific series numbers based on their colors, specifically chrome or natural colors.

Designed as a surface lure, it had a concave face that according to Heddon's 1938 catalog when the first of the Chugger Spook lures was announced, was "A special bait for 'popping', 'chugging' or 'plunking'."

1938 Heddon Catalog Chugger Spook Illustration

The Big Chugger Spook measures 4-1/2" in body length, not including the rubber skirt attached to the tail hook, weighed in at a hefty 1-5/8 ounces and had two 3/0 treble hooks. It was designated as a saltwater lure and as noted, came with a rubber skirt. The listed colors in 1972 were Chrome with Black & White Skirt (NP), Chrome Blue with Black & White Skirt (NPB), Silver Flitter with Green & White Skirt (SS), Mackerel with Green & White Skirt (GDS), Yellow/Silver Stripe with Red & Yellow Skirt (YWS) and White/Red Stripe with Red & Yellow Skirt (RWS), some six (6) cataloged colors in all. In addition to the colored rubber skirt listed in each color name, the lure also came with a extra orange "flo-skirt". To date, two (2) uncataloged colors have been found, All or Solid White (W) and Shiner Scale, Red Head (PRH).

In 1974, the name of the lure was changed to Big Chugg, continued to be produced under that name until the last year it was cataloged, 1976, and was listed in the same six (6) colors in all the catalogs. During its production life, the lure was sold in perhaps one of the largest boxes Heddon ever made, measuring some 8-1/2" in length and rivaled Heddon's box for the 8" King Cobra lure, Heddon series #9940.

Big Chugger Spook Colors
Mackerel - 9550GDS
Yellow/Silver Stripe - 9550YWS
White - 9550W
(Uncataloged)
Shiner Scale, Red Head - 9550PRH
(Uncataloged)
Silver Scale, 9550SS
White/Red Stripe, 9550RWS

Chrome Blue (9550NPB)

(Picture courtesy of Russell Norris!)

Chrome (9550NP)

(Picture courtesy of Jim Viviano!)

 

The Little Maid

Little Maid Fishing Lead Holders

In the world of fishing, I'm almost certain no other sport or past-time has as many gadgets and/gee-whiz items as does fishing! What I've always like best is that though the major manufacturers have produced probably hundreds of thousands of fishing tackle items, some fisherman, somewhere, decided whatever the commerical market offered wasn't good enough or perhaps, didn't offer what was needed to entice the wily fish!

Little Maid Paper Insert

The Little Maid Fishing Lead Holder is a device that was designed to work as a jig. It was strung through fishing line to which a sinker was attached. A second line ran off the Little Maid to which the actual bait was attached as illustrated in the instruction sheet below. Basically, this is a very commercial version of what is commonly known as a 'Wolf River Rig" (also called a three-way river rig) which uses a three-way swivel to accomplish much the same thing. This is an improvement over that type of rig, however, in that it can be easily adjusted for depth by moving it up and down the main line as needed using the grommet (C in illustration) and at least according to the sales paper, keeps to hook away from the sinker/main line to prevent tangling.


Instruction Sheet


Shipping envelope

These came in a small envelope that included the instruction sheet and a sales brochure for this and another gadget called the Magic Eye, another extension device that came in four models numbered #101 through #104.

As indicated by the paperwork, this was made by MacReady Products of Warren, Michigan, and came if 4 different colors, i.e, red, yellow, green and white, and sold for 35 cents each. Note the phone number on the envelope, "PR-5-2265" which dates these to the 1950's. The plastic line tie is marked in raised letters LITTLE MAID and also PAT PEND though I wasn't able to find any patent information about the company and this device.

If you have any further information on any of the items displayed on this page which you'd like to share, please send your comments to me and I'll update the page accordingly. Contributions of interesting items and/or unknowns are encouraged. Lures pictured in LURE LORE are NOT FOR SALE!

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Web Author: Tom Jacomet
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